We’re pleased to announce the successful launch of our eighth Luv2meetU service, which is open to adults with learning disabilities across Newcastle, Northumberland and North Tyneside.
Luv2meetU is Hft’s friendship and dating agency for adults with learning disabilities and the launch of a new branch in Newcastle has been a huge success.
To launch the new service, Hft held a celebratory event on 29 January, where 140 guests from all ages and abilities went along to enjoy music, food, party games and karaoke at Newcastle’s Yates bar. Sacha Samms, Project Development Worker, says everyone had an amazing time at the event:
“We had such an amazing time! It was brilliant watching everyone dancing, singing on the karaoke and enjoying our specially made Luv2meetU celebration cake. I saw lots of people making new friends and having a good dance. I was totally overwhelmed by the number of people who turned up to celebrate the launch of this branch, and certainly did not expect the amazing response from people donating raffle prizes. Guests left with some amazing gifts including days out, bottles of champagne and jewellery gift hampers.”
During the event, Hft staff signed up 16 new members, received several volunteering applications, and handed out a further 25 application forms to interested individuals. Also welcomed were representatives from groups such as St Anne’s, United Response, Mencap, Friends Action, Twisting Ducks, and Home Group.
Karen England, Project Development Manager, said that the team plans on running eight events a month in the community, including bowling, karaoke, pub quiz nights, and any other activities that members express an interest in. They will also begin running specialist events for people on the autistic spectrum.
Karen says programmes like Luv2meetU are essential for the wellbeing of people with learning disabilities.
“We’re delighted to be able to extend Luv2meetU into these new areas” she says. “There is a real need for this kind of service – research shows that people with learning disabilities frequently experience chronic loneliness, and many of the individuals we work with find it hard to meet people.”
This new Luv2meetU service is open to people from Newcastle, Northumberland and North Tyneside. The staff team look forward to welcoming many more new members to the service.
Want to find out more?
Last year Luv2meetU celebrated its 10th anniversary. It was originally set up as a pilot in the Leeds and Wakefield area, supporting 40 people to get out and about, socialise and build friendships. The team now supports around 200 people, and has enabled dozens more to make friends and forge relationships.
To find out more about becoming a member or volunteer at one of our Luv2meetU services, please visit the Luv2meetU website.